Chemical Peels

Chemical Peels are one form of a non-surgical procedure that can bring about rejuvenated, smooth and radiant skin.

The chemical solution is usually applied to the skin on the face, but it can also be applied onto the neck and hands, which causes the skin to peel after which a fresh new skin will emerge.

New skin is always smoother and has fewer wrinkles. However, new skin is quite sensitive to the sun so it is highly advised to use a good sun block to protect your skin and avoid exposing your skin to direct sunlight for long.

The best candidates for a Chemical Peel are those who are light-haired and fair-skinned, but a chemical peel also shows good results on darker skin as well.

Purpose of Using Chemical Peels:

  • Acne treatment
  • For smoother and finer skin
  • Diminish scar marks
  • Lessen freckles, age spots and melasma
  • Improve damage caused by sunburn

There are Different Types of Chemical Peels:

  • Phenol Peels – This is one of the strongest peels. This is used to treat deep wrinkles and blotches. It is also used to eliminate precancerous growths.
  • Trichloroacetic Acid Peels – This is the chemical peel used especially for those with darker skin complexions. It removes wrinkles, blemishes and problems related to skin pigmentation.
  • Alpha Hydroxy Acid Peels – This is a mild peel to treat dry skin, acne, fine wrinkles and uneven pigmentation.
  • Retinoic Acid Peel – This is used to treat scars, wrinkles and problems of pigmentation which can be performed by both the plastic surgeons and dermatologists.
  • Beta Hydroxy Acid Peels – This is used to aid in removing dead skin cells and treats acne.
  • Jessner’s Peel – This is used to treat the intracellular bridges present between the keratinocytes which were formulated by the German dermatologist.

The Procedure:

A Chemical Peel is usually performed in the clinic of the doctor or practitioner where the skin on the face is first cleansed (or the area that needs peeling). A cleanser will remove the excess oil. After cleansing the dermatologist or skin expert will cover your hair as well as your eyes for protection before applying the chemical peel solution.

Some people may experience burning or a tingling sensation, an ice application is helpful in sooth it. Though the pain usually felt in deeper peels, a painkiller can be taken to sooth the pain.

After effects may include redness then scaling occurs after that, but all this stops within 3 to 7 days. This procedure may need to be performed again until the required effect is attained. The usual time of the repeat of a chemical peel is within 4 weeks to 1 month.

After the procedure, some peels may need bandaging to treat the skin. Bandages are generally taken off after a few days and may make the efficiency of the treatment better.

Risks and Complications

The chemical peel procedure has little risk, but sometimes complications may arise depending on how ones’ skin reacts to it. The biggest risks may include:

  • The use of birth control pills
  • Pregnancy
  • Family history of problems associated with pigmentation (may increase the risk of developing unusual pigmentation)

Other risks may include:

  • Skin atrophy
  • Whiteheads
  • Prolonged erythema
  • Change in texture
  • Pigmentary alterations
  • Infection

Many of the complications associated with chemical peels become apparent during the process of healing. It may manifest itself as a purulent discharge, delayed healing of the wound, crusting, or ulcerations etc. Early acknowledgment and application of suitable antibiotics will stop the spread of infection, prevent scarring and also heal the skin.

Complications must be reported to your doctor. By doing so, you will get an early treatment and will also be safe from further problems and failure of treatment.